Today I am joined by horror and post-apocalyptic author, Dylan Morgan.
The Fun Five:
1 What part of the world do you come from?
I come from a land down under. Ew, no, not Australia, but its more superior brother: God Zone, The Land of the Long White Cloud—Middle Earth. I’m a Kiwi, born in Christchurch on New Zealand’s South Island. I’ve grown up a Brit, however, as my parents were British and moved back to the UK when I was only 9 years old. Right now I live a few clicks north of Oslo, in Norway, and while this country is expensive as hell it has a great standard of living.
2 What did you want to be when you grew up?
A rock star. Probably the dream of a lot of young kids, but I tried to pursue that path by first learning guitar before switching to drums. I never got involved with a band of musicians who were good enough or dedicated enough to push towards making that dream a reality and so, unfortunately, that childhood ambition fizzled out. Music remains a huge part of my life, though, and I often spend almost all day with headphones in my ears, rocking out to loud heavy metal.
3 List three words to describe yourself.
Bloody nice bloke.
4 Who would play you in a film about your life?
Me. I want the stardom and the recognition (and I wouldn’t have to act much). Oh, and I want a nice big contract, too.
5 Do you have any unique talents or hobbies?
You could probably list the above mentioned guitar and drum playing as my “talent”. Although it’s not unique, I can play instruments, which is always a good thing. I can place my hand under my opposite armpit and make fart noises—not sure if that’s truly a unique talent or just a humorous party trick, though.
The Sensible Six:
1 What inspired you to write your first book?
Honestly, I can’t remember. My first book is Hosts, about an isolated skiing community shut off from the outside world by an intense snowstorm at the same moment that a prehistoric species of parasite awakens from the ice and infects the town. I have no clue where the idea came from but as with all my stories once it’s there I need to write it down to get the thoughts out of my head. My stories come from random inspiration, mainly—like song lyrics (The Sickness), or a video game (The Dead Lands), or even a vivid dream (October Rain). Many weird images or situations inspire my muse.
2 Give us the title and genre of your latest book and a brief tagline.
My latest book is The Sickness and it’s straight-up horror.
Forced home to attend the funeral of his parents, James Harris must face the depraved horrors of a tormented childhood he’d tried so hard to forget.
(You can read my review of The Sickness here)
3 You have three novellas, a collection of short stories, and four full-length novels to your name, do you have a favourite?
Yeah, The Dead Lands is my favourite. It’s a post-apocalyptic story set in mankind’s distant future in a solar system that is not our own, about a squadron of twenty soldiers who are sent from one planet to another to rescue that planet’s president who has recently woken from cryogenic hibernation. When they enter the city where the president is located they encounter a population of mutants, altered by a hundred years of fallout—it’s a very fast-paced and gory book. The Horror Bookshelf called it one of the best reads in 2014; British author Terry Tyler said it’s in the top 5 indie books she’s ever read, so the response to it has been amazing. I love the characters in the novel, and the predicament they face. I spent a while creating their futuristic weapons, which was real fun. I enjoyed writing that novel more than any of my other stories and I think it shows in the writing.
4 I love the graphic (and gory) nature of your writing and the inclusion of mystery and the supernatural. What do you enjoy most about writing horror?
Thank you, Shelley, that’s so nice of you to say. One of the things that pleases me the most is when readers say such positive things about my work. It makes all the hours I’ve spent away from my family worthwhile. What I enjoy most about writing horror is creating atmosphere, building suspense towards the action. If I get that right then even I enjoy reading it, and I’m my own worst critique. I also feel that horror is a forgiving genre, you can incorporate different styles and even different genres into your stories and they’ll work equally as well. For example, as mentioned above, The Dead Lands is a futuristic slash military slash post-apocalyptic thriller novel with hints of science fiction and splashes of horror throughout. Each genre feeds off each other to create a good story. Oh, and if you love graphic and gory then you should check it out. (Subtle plug).
5 What can we expect from you in the future?
I’m hoping people will be hearing a lot more from me this year. I am re-releasing my dystopian novella October Rain that I’ve just retained the rights too, so that should be out by March. And then hopefully in early summer I’ll be releasing The Dead City, which is the post-apocalyptic sequel to the above-mentioned The Dead Lands. I have started writing a new story which is probably going to be a novella but as my stories tend to take on a life of their own it could easily become a full-length novel instead. I want to get back to writing short fiction, too, which I’ve stepped away from, as that’s more challenging than crafting longer stories.
6 How can we contact you or find out more about your books?
I have a website at http://dylanjmorgan.weebly.com/ which I need to update more often than I do. I’m on Twitter a few times a week at @dylanjmorgan. I don’t do that auto DM or auto retweet bullshit, so if anyone comes over to say hello they’ll get me and not some stupid bot.
The Sickness by Dylan J Morgan:
A husband confronted by his jealous wife . . . an old man abandoned so his grandson can claim his inheritance . . . a fifteen year-old boy disowned because of his handicap. All of them are dead. All of them have returned. And they have come for revenge.
James Harris is thirty-six years old, divorced, and has a sixteen-year-old rebellious daughter to contend with. His chaotic life is thrown into further turmoil with the phone call bearing news that his parents have died in tragic circumstances. Forced home to attend the funeral, James steps back into a world he’d tried so hard to forget.
Nash is a small farming community in rural England: picturesque and serene, but it has secrets—violent, horrific, depraved secrets. Wanting to keep their business hidden, someone is not about to let James leave. But when an unexpected visitor arrives in the village searching for James, things take a horrific turn for the worst and he is forced to face the horrors of his past if he is to have any hope of survival.